Jane Mayer’s reporting on the Predator Drone program in the New Yorker last month is both fascinating and sad—on one hand we’ve definitely crossed the line between war and murder, on the other hand it is “the only game in town.” 🙁
I cannot see good things coming from this.
3 thoughts on “They should have called them Terminators”
Some people might find this interview on Fresh Air more accessible than the New Yorker article: http://www.npr.org/templates/story/story.php?storyId=113978637
Crossed the line between war and murder? I don't think so, honestly we are at war and if you take the historic point of view we have been at war the last 1400 odd years.
This if you need to reminded is not a war we in the West wanted, nor started but there you have it. The problem isn't particularly muslims nor is it their religion (Islam), but the problem is all religion – history tells you this, almost all wars have begun in the name of religion or a God.
As for murder on the mass scale, care your focus elsewhere in the world to see the real story, rather than just browse the headlines – they are there just to sell the print remember and not always covering the true, real issues of today.
@Les: When you have civilians engaged in assassination in an area that is not officially a war zone (Pakistan) that is creating an immense amount of collateral damage, then you've clearly crossed some line. It is specifically because we've cross a line that we've asked civilians to do this and not the military. The military is using a similar technology for tactical purposes in a war zone (Afghanistan), and I have no problem with that. More specifically we have entered a grey area of regarding our ban on political assassinations.
I do not claim a "murder on a mass scale"—that has a specific meaning (genocide), which this is clearly not—this is assassination. War allows us to pre-empt this, but if you ask simply, given that the military actually invented, has and uses the technology in a neighboring theatre, why must we use the CIA and the private sector to engage in these type of airstrikes?
Obviously, because I understand the reason for the use of Predators in targeted assassination at the direction of the Pakistani government on their soil, I do far more than browse the headlines, which is far more than you: who simply see this as a war of the "West" with "Islam." Even if I were to go that far back (900 to 1000 years actually) the expulsion of muslims from the iberian pennisula and the first crusades do as much to indict "the West" more so than it does Islam.